Wednesday, June 18, 2014
When I made this dish for the first time, it was still cold outside. Jackets and hats and boots were all still a part of my life, and the sun was still quick to disappear in the evening.
Now, it's damn hot outside and I have been sunburned twice already because I keep stupidly forgetting that in Canada the sun can and will hurt you, and even if you soak your back in a thousand tea bags that awkward tan will still be with you for the next three months (thanks for nothing, internet).
It's a whole other world out there now, full of soccer hooligans and shorts and long days filled with sunshine.
This recipe feels like it came from another era of my life, when things seemed predictable and stable and I felt like I knew what the next six months of my life looked like. Now I don't know what the next week looks like.
About six weeks ago, on a Sunday afternoon, I decided to quit my job to travel the world. It was not well thought out or planned for, but I've never felt more excited or terrified about anything in my life. The decision certainly surprised no one more than me. In fact, I still can't really believe I'm going, and I'm flying to India this Friday. Holy shit.
In the midst of all this sudden chaos, there hasn't been much space for thought or rest, and cooking has been a very slapdash affair (if I even manage to cook anything at all). With all of my creative energies elsewhere, I've been falling back onto easy, familiar dishes that don't ask for much attention and offer much forgiveness.
Rice and lentils give me space to think and rest. They'll simmer happily away while my mind wanders, or while I literally wander away. As long as I have a timer, disaster never strikes.
The garlic brown butter is just a little bit of flair and not much work, and along with some minced fresh dill, is all a pot of lentils and rice needs to become a delicious meal rather than a poor/busy man's dish of necessity. Don't skimp on the garlic or the butter - it's what makes rice and lentils worth writing about, trust me.